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rapture

Discussion in 'Christianity DIR' started by Aqualung, Jul 3, 2005.

  1. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    I had never heard of the rapture until a few years ago, and I never really got a satisfactory answer about what it is, but this seems like a fairly good place to discuss it. What is it? Where did anybody ever get the idea that such a thing would happen (Bible-based reasons, if there even are any)? Which faith is it most prevalent in (because I've jumped faiths a lot, and never heard it in any of the churches I've gone to), or is it just some concept that isn't really specific to any church?
     
  2. Linus

    Linus Well-Known Member

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    It's pretty involved. If my understanding of it is correct, it is supposed, in some circles, to be the moment when Christ returns (sort of) and the faithful that are living are summoned up to heaven. There is, of course, more to it than that. Much more. I've been trying to find some notes on this subject that I had taken from a class, but I can't seem to find them. I'll post more when I can locate them.
     
  3. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    A Roman Catholic perspective on the subject, in case you are interested: The Rapture
     
  4. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Oldest Heretic

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    Thanks Scott. a totally new one to me. but can't say it will change my life. Not exactly a main teaching it would seem, but is it a required Catholic belief.

    Terry
    __________________________________
    Blessed are the gentle, they shall inherit the land
     
  5. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    Far from it.... the Protestant idea of the rapture popular today is totally REJECTED by the Church.
     
  6. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    Many thanks to you! :)
     
  7. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    as far as i am aware the rapture is not a bible teaching , those small mumber of 144,000 who will be ruling with christ in his heavenly kingdom, first have to die ,to recieve the promises .they are resurrected in the twinkling of an eye .i think most of them are already up thereruling with christ in his heavenly kingdom
    1 Cor. 15:50, RS: "I tell you this, brethren: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable............no flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom .i think those who believe the rapture say that they will be bodily caught up from the earththe word rapture is not in the bible

     
  8. blueman

    blueman God's Warrior

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    Jesus was not referring to a fleshly physical body being raptured up, but a new spiritual one. The process of the rapture is ingrained in biblical teaching through the apostle Paul (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18) being a major reference point in scripture. :)
     
  9. Lindsey-Loo

    Lindsey-Loo Steel Magnolia

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    My congregation does not believe in "rapture" at all. That is, we don't believe in the antichrist, etc.

    It's been a few monthes since my preacher gave a sermon on why rapture is not a Bible teaching, so I'm a little rusty on this subject. I'll try to get the sermon outline on Sunday so I can study for myself, and then I'll get back to you.
     
  10. reyjamiei

    reyjamiei Member

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapture the entry for the rapture at wikipedia.org contains, sections on The theory, Scriptual basis, Different Views, Belief and the Rapture in the media.
     
  11. EnhancedSpirit

    EnhancedSpirit High Priestess

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    Some believe this has happened in the past. The Mayans are believed to have raptured their whole community. And left us a calender to know when we will reach the critical mass needed to accomplish such a feat again.

    Rapture is the ability to go between Heaven and earth without killing the body. Out of body experiences are like a test drive to this ability. Here is Mayan Oracle: Lamat:
    I am Lamat, the way show-er.
    I expand the seeds of your consciousness
    beyond previous boundaries.

    I am ignition, spiraling starburst,
    golden star trail of the harmonics
    of perceptual star interlace.

    I am a springboard propulsion
    into glorious spark-filled flight.

    My star-trail beckons you leave behind
    the parameters of the past,
    leaping into unpatterned potential.
    I am flowing images of all times present,
    forms rearranging,
    consciousness bursting bonds of old refrains.
    There you will eagerly taste
    deliciously liberating star harmonies,
    unspeakably beautiful celestial sounds
    provided simply by your willingness to go beyond.
    Do you hesitate?
    To what are you anchored?
    In an instant,
    everything is unfamiliar, changed.

    Offer up your tethers,
    Be bathed in the new frequencies
    that sweep across your being like waves of rapturous bliss!
    Let previous perceptions dissipate.
    You are becoming kaleidoscopic resonant sparks,
    releasing inchoate yet already realized patterns
    into the starscape!
    Soar beyond, blaze shimmering trails into the unknown.
    Your known image is breathlessly dispersed
    as a freed starseed.
    Exploring your vast luminosity, beyond cognition,
    expand every known parameter
    of who you know yourself to be,
    until apparent boundaries
    burst into incandescent sparks of divinity,
    dancing in rapture on the tapestry of the Infinite.

    Slowly your energies pulsate into a new nucleus,
    yet unanchored in gravitation's grasp.
    Beyond previous boundaries,
    a shinning new center emerges
    from my shimmering starburst veil,
    blazing like luminous mandala in your countenance.
    Following ever further
    the scintillating allure of my star dance,
    hypnotic will you find the beauty
    of my golden starbursts.
    If you choose to follow this star-trail,
    you will discover
    that you are the player and the played
    in the cosmic composition of harmony!


     
  12. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    Rapture is the belief that faithful Christians will be bodily caught up from the earth, suddenly taken out of the world, to be united with the Lord "in the air." The word "rapture" is understood by some persons, but not by all, to be the meaning of 1 Thessalonians 4:17. The word "rapture" does not occur in the inspired Scriptures

     
  13. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    Here's how my padre described it; let's see how anyone takes to this description (since I think he's wrong and don't beleive in rapture) He says that the rapture will happen right before Christ's millenial reighn. All the people died faithfully adhered to the Gospel will be raptured. All people who were unfaithfull or those who died without the gospel (the old jews, little children, people who lived where they couldn't hear it) will be on the earth during Christ's millenial reighn, &c. Then, after the millenium and after Satan is defeated, all the worthy will live on a paradisical earth.

    I especially want to hear may's response to this, since a lot of this seems to be JW interpretation of the Bible.
     
  14. SoyLeche

    SoyLeche meh...

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    From a LDS perspective, it is pretty much the opposite of what your padre said. We believe that at the time of the 2nd coming the Earth will be cleansed, meaning that the wicked will be destroyed and the righteous will remain on Earth durring Christ's Millenial Reign.
     
  15. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    And I certainly didn't beleive him either. But I do wonder where this idea came from. And as it happens to answer some of the questions other faiths might have about salvation for those who were unlucky enough to die without the knowledge, I would like to hear others' views on that.
     
  16. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    this is what JW beliefs are.
    When the apostle Paul said that Christians would be "caught up" to be with the Lord, what subject was being discussed?

    1 Thess. 4:13-18, RS: "We would not have you ignorant, brethren, concerning those who are asleep ["those who sleep in death," NE; "those who have died," TEV, JB], that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. For this we declare to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, shall not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the archangel’s call, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first; then we who are alive, who are left, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words." (Evidently some members of the Christian congregation in Thessalonica had died. Paul encouraged the survivors to comfort one another with the resurrection hope. He reminded them that Jesus was resurrected after his death; so, too, at the coming of the Lord, those faithful Christians among them who had died would be raised to be with Christ.)

    Who are the ones that will be ‘caught up in the clouds,’ as stated at 1 Thessalonians 4:17?

    Verse 15 explains that they are faithful ones "who are left until the coming of the Lord," that is, they are still living at the time of Christ’s coming. Will they ever die? According to Romans 6:3-5 and 1 Corinthians 15:35, 36, 44 they must die before they can gain heavenly life. But there is no need for them to remain in the death state awaiting Christ’s return. They will instantly be "caught up," "in the twinkling of an eye," to be with the Lord.—1 Cor. 15:51, 52, RS; also Revelation 14:13...

    Will Christ appear visibly on a cloud and then take away faithful Christians into the heavens while the world looks on?

    Did Jesus say whether the world would see him again with their physical eyes?

    John 14:19, [i]RS:[/i] "Yet a little while, and [i]the[/i] [i]world[/i] [i]will[/i] [i]see[/i] [i]me[/i] [i]no[/i] [i]more,[/i] but you [his faithful disciples] will see me; because I live, you will live also.(Compare 1 Timothy 6:16.)[b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]What[/b][/i] [b][i]is[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]the[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]meaning[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]of[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]the[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]Lord’s[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]‘descending[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]from[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]heaven’?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]Could the Lord "descend from heaven," as stated at 1 Thessalonians 4:16, without being visible to physical eyes? In the days of ancient Sodom and Gomorrah, Jehovah said that he was going to "go down to see" what the people were doing. (Gen. 18:21, [i]RS[/i]) But when Jehovah made that inspection, no human saw him, although they did see the angelic representatives that he sent. (John 1:18) Similarly, without having to return in the flesh, Jesus could turn his attention to his faithful followers on earth to reward them[b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]In[/b][/i] [b][i]what[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]sense,[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]then,[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]will[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]humans[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]"see"[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]the[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]Lord[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]"coming[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]in[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]a[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]cloud"?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]Jesus foretold: "Then they will see the Son of man [Jesus Christ] coming in a cloud with power and great glory." (Luke 21:27, [i]RS[/i]) In no way does this statement or similar ones in other texts contradict what Jesus said as recorded at John 14:19. Consider: At Mount Sinai, what occurred when God ‘came to the people [i]in[/i] [i]a[/i] [i]thick[/i] [i]cloud,’[/i] as stated at Exodus 19:9? ([i]RS[/i]) God was invisibly present; the people of Israel saw visible evidence of his presence, but none of them actually saw God with their eyes. So, too, when Jesus said that he would come "in a cloud," he must have meant that he would be [i]invisible[/i] to human eyes but that humans would be aware of his presence. They would "see" him with their mental eyes, discerning the fact that he was present.....sorry this is a bit of a long post but i will continue with this later[b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

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    [i][b][b][/b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][b][/b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][b][/b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][b][/b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][b][/b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][/font][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/size][/font][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][/font][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/size][/font][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/size][/font][/b][/size][b][/b][/font][b][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][/font][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][/font][/b][/i][/size][i][b][/b][/i][/font][i][b][/b][/i][/size][/font]
     
  17. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    Is it possible for Christians to be taken to heaven with their physical bodies?

    1 Cor. 15:50, RS: "I tell you this, brethren: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable

    Does the experience of the prophet Elijah contradict this? Not at all. It must be understood in the light of Jesus’ clear statement centuries later: "No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man." (John 3:13, RS) Although Elijah was seen as he "went up by a whirlwind into heaven," this does not mean that he went into the spirit realm. Why not? Because he is later reported as sending a letter of reproof to the king of Judah. (2 Ki. 2:11, RS; 2 Chron. 21:1, 12-15) Before humans invented airplanes, Jehovah there used his own means (a fiery chariot and a whirlwind) to lift Elijah off the ground into the heaven where the birds fly and to transport him to another place.—Compare Genesis 1:6-8, 20

    Will faithful Christians perhaps be taken to heaven secretly, simply disappearing from the earth without dying?





    Rom. 6:3-5, RS: "Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? . . . For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his." (What occurred in the case of Jesus set the pattern. His disciples as well as others knew he had died. He was not restored to heavenly life until after his death and resurrection.)​










    1 Cor. 15:35, 36, 44, RS: "Some one will ask, ‘How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?’ You foolish man! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. It is sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual body." (So death comes before one receives that spiritual body, does it not?)

    Will all faithful Christians be taken miraculously from the earth by the Lord before the great tribulation?





    Matt. 24:21, 22: "Then there will be great tribulation such as has not occurred since the world’s beginning until now, no, nor will occur again. In fact, unless those days were cut short, no flesh would be saved; but on account of the chosen ones those days will be cut short." (This does not say that "the chosen ones" will all have been taken to heaven before the great tribulation, does it? Rather, it holds out the prospect to them, along with associates in the flesh, of surviving that great tribulation on earth.)​










    Rev. 7:9, 10, 14, RS: "After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no man could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to the Lamb!’ . . . ‘These are they who have come out of the great tribulation.’" (To "come out" of something a person must go into it or be in it. So this great multitude must be persons who actually experience the great tribulation and come out of it as survivors.)

    What protection will there be for true Christians during the great tribulation?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][size=2][/size]

    [i][b]Rom. 10:13, [i]RS:[/i] "Every one who calls upon the name of the Lord ["Jehovah," [i]NW[/i]] will be saved."[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Zeph. 2:3, [i]RS:[/i] "Seek the LORD ["Jehovah," [i]NW,[/i] [i]AS,[/i] [i]Yg,[/i] [i]By[/i]], all you humble of the land, who do his commands; seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you may be hidden on the day of the wrath of the LORD." (Also Isaiah 26:20)[b][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Will[/b] [b]all[/b] [b]true[/b] [b]Christians[/b] [b]perhaps[/b] [b]be[/b] [b]taken[/b] [b]to[/b] [b]heaven[/b] [b]after[/b] [b]the[/b] [b]great[/b] [b]tribulation?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Matt. 5:5, [i]RS:[/i] "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth."[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Ps. 37:29, [i]RS:[/i] "The righteous shall possess the land ["earth," [i]Ro,[/i] [i]NW[/i]], and dwell upon it for ever." (Also verses 10, 11, 34)[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]1 Cor. 15:50, [i]RS:[/i] "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.[b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]Why[/b][/i] [b][i]are[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]some[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]Christians[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]taken[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]to[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]heaven[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]to[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]be[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]with[/i][/b][i][/i] [b][i]Christ?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][/b][i][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/i][font=Arial][size=2]

    [i][b]Rev. 20:6, [i]RS:[/i] "They shall be priests of God and of Christ, and they shall reign with him a thousand years." (Since they are to reign with Christ, there must be people over whom they reign. Who are these? See Matthew 5:5 and Psalm 37:29.)[b][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Will[/b] [b]those[/b] [b]who[/b] [b]go[/b] [b]to[/b] [b]heaven[/b] [b]be[/b] [b]returned[/b] [b]later[/b] [b]to[/b] [b]the[/b] [b]earth[/b] [b]to[/b] [b]live[/b] [b]forever[/b] [b]here[/b] [b]in[/b] [b]Paradise?[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]Prov. 2:21, [i]RS:[/i] "The upright will inhabit the land ["dwell on earth," [i]NE[/i]], and men of integrity will remain in it." (Notice that the scripture does not say that such upright people will [i]return[/i] to the earth but that they will [i]remain[/i] there.)[font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font][/b][font=Arial][size=2]

    [b]1 Thess. 4:17, [i]RS:[/i] "And so we [Christians caught away to heaven] shall [i]always[/i] be with the Lord."[/b]

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  18. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    What you have said doesn't really seem to contradict, per se, what my dad said. He doesn't say they won't live on the earth after the millenial reign. He says they just won't be there before. He doesn't say they will be raised in fleshy bodies, since "flesh and blood cannot enter the kingdom of heaven." What you say doesn't really seem to contradict my father's explanation. JThe first two little paragraphs do seem to support the rapture as my dad explained it. Can you explain how they preclude it?

    I never said Jesus would come down. It seems like that's kind of a moot point that does nothing for the discussion. Can you explain the significance of the quotes? :) And I think John 14:19 was a reference to how he only showed his disciples he had been resurected in the flesh, before the assenction.

    I would interpret the 1 Cor 15:50 to mean that the sinful flesh and blood that we have all inherited cannot enter the kingdom of God. This is like the sewn in corruption and raised in incorruption. Our corrupted bodies will be raised as incorrupetd fleshy bodies which can enter teh kingdom of God, becuae they are not the sinful flesh refferred to.

    Once again, I don't think this precludes what my dad was saying. They could be in heaven during the millenial reighn, then come back to fight. Perhaps you could explain these little things. I would find it very helpful if you could show me what it is you beleive and what part of what I say is at odds with that. :)
     
  19. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    As this is rather a deep subject i looked up a (questions from readers )in the watchtower magazine which is printed by JW .it was about the chosen ones , maybe it will explain better than i can , what i like about this artical is the fact that it is not dogmatic


    Questions​
    From Readers







    ·​
    Will some anointed Christians survive the "great tribulation" to live on earth in the new world before being taken to heaven?





    Pointedly, the Bible does not say.​

    Christians have long been interested in the privileges that God might extend to them. (Acts 1:6) That has especially been true in our time since the Kingdom was established. (Matthew 24:3, 24, 34) With the end of this wicked system to come in their time, Christians have wondered whether some spirit-anointed ones might live through "the war of the great day of God" and serve on earth for a time before receiving their heavenly reward. (Revelation 16:14) The Bible does not say that this will occur, yet certain patterns and prophecies have been taken to indicate that it might. Rather than be dogmatic, we can watch to see how God will handle things.​

    Some Biblical events have parallels later on among God’s people. For instance, we know that Jonah was in a large fish for three days and three nights. Some people would view that as simply an example of divine deliverance, but Jesus said that it was a prophetic pattern of how he would be in the grave for a comparable period before his resurrection. (Jonah 1:17; Matthew 12:40) Yes, Jonah’s experience was a prophetic type. Understandably, God’s servants have looked at prophecies and specific Bible accounts to see whether these might indicate how Jehovah will yet deal with them.​

    As an example involving Bible prophecy, The Watch Tower of December 15, 1928, discussed Micah 5:2-15. The book of Micah dealt with ‘the Assyrian’s’ desolating of Samaria and the Jews’ return from exile in Babylon. (Micah 1:1, 5-7; 4:10) But it also pointed to later developments, such as the Messiah’s birth in Bethlehem. (Micah 5:2) Micah prophesied that after their deliverance from "the Assyrian," "the remaining ones of Jacob" would become "like dew from Jehovah" and "like a maned young lion among droves of sheep." (Micah 5:6-8) The Watch Tower commented: "This may be taken as an indication that some of the remnant will be on earth even after Armageddon is fought and will then have some more work to do in the name of the Lord and to his praise and glory." Notice the modest, reasonable language used to introduce this possibility: "This may be taken as an indication."​

    What of a Bible account that might parallel such survival on earth? One example that has been presented concerns Noah and his family. Noah has been viewed as typifying Jesus in this time of the end. (Genesis 6:8-10; Matthew 24:37) As Noah led his wife and their three sons and daughters-in-law through the end of that ancient system, Christ will provide leadership for the remnant of his bride class and those who become children of the "Eternal Father," Jesus. Noah’s wife survived the Flood and shared in the renewing of true worship on a cleansed earth. A parallel might be the survival into the new world of a remnant of the bride class.—Isaiah 9:6, 7; 2 Corinthians 11:2; Revelation 21:2, 9.​

    Other Biblical accounts have also been viewed as suggesting that some of the anointed might live into the new world. For example, Jeremiah survived the destruction of Jerusalem; "the man" with the secretary’s inkhorn remained to see the executional work before he went back to give his report.—Ezekiel 9:4, 8, 11.​

    Comments about the possibility that some of the anointed might survive into the new world are made with good intentions and in the light of Biblical precedents for trying to understand prophecies or patterns that could have later parallels. If it turns out that none of the anointed are left on earth, there will be no reason for dissatisfaction. We already have accepted that Biblical matters are understood better as time passes. For instance, The Watchtower of July 15, 1981, discussed Micah 5:6-9 again and explained that "the remnant of spiritual Israelites have not had to wait until after . . . Har–Magedon in order to be as a ‘dew’ of refreshment to people." This discussion again offered the possibility that the remnant might survive God’s great war and for a while "continue to be as a refreshing ‘dew’ to the ‘great crowd’ of ‘other sheep.’" We can see, though, that the passing of time and the increase in spiritual light can broaden and alter our understanding of prophecy or of Bible dramas.—Proverbs 4:18.​

    We do know that the Bible links the ‘coming of the Son of man’ with ‘the gathering of the chosen ones from the four winds.’ (Matthew 24:29-31) Also, during "the presence of the Lord" in Kingdom power, anointed ones sleeping in death are raised to life in heaven. (1 Thessalonians 4:15, 16) These sealed ones are there to become part of the Lamb’s wife. When does that occur?​

    In the book of Revelation, immediately after John tells of God’s executing the religious harlot, Babylon the Great, he describes "the marriage of the Lamb." A filthy, immoral "woman" is removed from the scene, and we see "the bride, the Lamb’s wife" ‘arrayed in bright, clean, fine linen, which stands for the righteous acts of the holy ones.’ (Revelation 18:10; 19:2, 7, 8; 21:9) The destruction of Babylon the Great is part of the great tribulation. (Matthew 24:21; Revelation 7:14) So it could be reasoned that some of the bride class will survive the great tribulation as evidence of Jehovah’s approval and protection. (Zephaniah 2:3; compare Matthew 24:22.) If they are thus preserved on earth, they could remain here until God chooses to take them to heaven.​

    However, the presentation in Revelation is not in strict sequential order. And it is not as though the small remnant of anointed ones will be needed to get the new world underway, for they have already trained millions of loyal Christians who will live forever on earth. Accordingly, God could take his anointed ones to heaven immediately after the destruction of Babylon the Great, setting the stage for "the marriage of the Lamb" to occur. All the holy ones could thus share with Christ in ‘shepherding the nations with an iron rod’ in the remainder of the great tribulation. (Revelation 2:26, 27; 19:11-21) If that is how God handles things, all the 144,000 would be with Jesus to ‘rule as kings with the Christ for the entire one thousand years.’—Revelation 20:4.​

    It certainly is fine that God’s people are keenly interested in peering into how he will direct and reward his servants. (Compare 1 Peter 1:12.) This reflects their confidence that his will is going to be done. Though we cannot and should not be dogmatic about particulars, we can eagerly look forward to what will occur.​









    Compare: You May Survive Armageddon Into God’s New World, pages 61, 292, 351; "Your Will Be Done on Earth," page 347; The Watchtower of May 1, 1942, page 133. (All published by the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc.)​

     
  20. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
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    So what is Jesus's millenial reign for? Do you beleive the same as my dad, that it is for those who died without/before the gospel, or do you beleive something different?
     
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